Police investigate if Baraboo arson suspect is tied to other fires

Suspect has history of arson

Baraboo police have arrested 42-year-old Timothy Larsen on arson charges in connection to a house fire on Sept. 2 in the 500 block of 6th Avenue.

A family had recently moved out, so the home was vacant at the time of the fire.

When police officers arrived on the scene of the fire, they didn’t have to go far to find the man who would eventually become their suspect.

“Interestingly enough, one of the first individuals that was contacted was our suspect, Mr. Larsen,” said Capt. Robert Sinden of the Baraboo Police Department.

Police investigate if Baraboo arson suspect is tied to other firesWitnesses placed Larsen near the home shortly before the fire occurred and investigators eventually determined the blaze was started by a candle. They used that candle to tie Larsen to the fire.

“Once we came up with a subject, what we do is we will typically take an item, in this case a candle, and send it to the crime lab. Then we take a sample of DNA from the suspect and see if there is a match. In this case, there was a match with Mr. Larsen,” Sinden said.

Police investigators are also looking into prior suspicious fires in the neighborhood to see if Larsen had any connection to them.

“Throughout our contact in the area, we had several neighbors that would come up to us and just mention to us that there have been some fires in the neighborhood that were suspicious,” Sinden said.

Larsen lives in a home next to the one destroyed by the arson fire. In 2011, his home was damaged by a fire.
In 1996, Larsen was arrested on an arson charge that he pleaded no contest to. He was sentenced to four years in state prison.

Baraboo police are asking individuals in the area who may have been the victim of a suspicious fire in recent years to contact them.